Coeur d’Alene Mines Corporation has insisted that it has assurances from the government of Bolivian President Evo Morales that its silver mine at San Bartolomé will not be nationalised following an announcement from the South American leader that mines would taken into state ownership.
Coeur d’Alene Mines Corporation and Pan American shares dropped following the news.
Humberto Rada, President of Coeur South America and Coeur Manquiri, the subsidiary of Coeur that operates San Bartolomé said:
“During a meeting Thursday with Bolivian Mining Minister Jose Pimentel, the Minister assured Coeur Manquiri and members of the Federation of Mining Workers Trade Union (FSTMB) that Manquiri will not be nationalized.”
Workers in Bolivia are striking in La Paz for higher wages. The President, though, has been firm saying that to increase state wages for nurses, doctors, teachers, police and the armed forces by the proposed 15% would be irresponsible. The President spent Sunday 10th and Monday 11th April in talks with thirty leaders from Central Obrera Boliviana (COB) to discuss their claims.
The leader expressed the difficulty of balancing a deficit with the demands of trade unions who want higher wages for workers at the expense of government reserves. Coeur d’Alene Mines Corporation, however, claims that the labor unions working with San Bartolomé management as well as the mining Cooperatives in Potosi have openly denounced any nationalization and expressed their support of Manquiri.